Ifakara, Nelson Mandela introduce Masters’ programme in public health

11Feb 2019
Beatrice Philemon
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Ifakara, Nelson Mandela introduce Masters’ programme in public health

IFAKARA Health Institute (IHI) in collaboration with Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST) had introduced Masters of Science programme in Public Health Research (MPHR) to produce public health researchers who will conduct research on public health issues.

Ifakara Health Institute, Chief Executive Director , Dr Honorati Masanja announed over the weekend when speaking during the official launch of the Master’s programme at IHI-Kingani Training Centre, located in Bagamoyo District, Coast Region The two-year programme and the course had been accredited by the Tanzania Commission for Universities (TCU) to produce Public Health Researchers for national development. Before introducing MPHR programme, IHI conducted research in collaboration with researchers from east Africa countries including Uganda to see which programme will be different with other programmes that offered in high learning institutions in the East Africa region. The research findings show that the Master’s programme in public health which was offered in high learning institutions did not have skills to conduct research and did not help students to conduct research is a very systematic oriented way. He thanked the Netherlands government for their financial support that in turn had helped them to build Ifakara Health Institute Kingani Training Centre to train public health specialists and come up with a unique Master’s programme. So far, 13 second-year students and 7 first-year students had joined Ifakara Health Institute Kingani Training Centre for MPHR programme. “NM-AIST will provide training with us, we have good PhD scientists who will train students on public health issues,” he noted. He said the first year students will be in classrooms and the second year, students will be focusing on research issues. Speaking on behalf of the guest of honour, the Board chairman of the Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) who is also Vice Chancellor of Hubert Kairuki Memorial University (HKMU) Prof. Charles Mgone said that MPHR is a unique programme, we want to train researchers who will do research on public issues. “We want to produce people who are quite different to conduct research to build our nation, solve our problem in Africa and beyond as well as make the course unique along the East Africa regional and beyond,” he noted. He said: Once you finish here, you can start to create employment opportunities and focus on public health issue. “When you’re doing research, people want to know what the impact of the research, people want to see it producing things very quickly and make our life better and national improvement.” He said public health research is something new, we need to invest in public health research so that we can help public access better services. “You have to take things in context accordingly to the environment of the community, he said noting that many East African countries we do not invest in what we are doing,” he noted. He said everything you touch need research, we need to invest in research because public health research is something new and we need to take the role seriously to save people’s live and have enough qualified public health specialists.

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